Emma Kimoto Added a Title in the Women's High Jump
Former West Virginia head women's track and field coach Jeff Huntoon enters his fourth year as the associate head coach for the Indiana track and field program. Huntoon works with IU's men's and women's sprints, hurdles and jumps. Huntoon, the 2003 NCAA Mid-Atlantic Region Coach of the Year, came to Bloomington after 18 years with the Mountaineers, which included a top-20 national finish during the 2005 season. He served as the assistant head men's and women's coach for 10 years prior to being promoted to the head men's and women's coach in 1999.
Some of Huntoon's credentials include coaching an Olympic Gold medalist, four Olympians and 11 Olympic trials qualifiers. He has mentored 50 All-Americans (36 women and 10 men) and 85 national qualifiers. Additionally, WVU athletes won two NCAA individual championships, 77 individual conference championships and more than 92 school records were established under his watch.
At Indiana, Huntoon's impact can be seen dramatically in Derek Drouin. The sophomore won NCAA titles during the 2010 indoor and outdoor seasons in the high jump after finishing as the indoor runner-up as a freshman. He was named Big Ten Field Athlete of the Year for both seasons in 2010 as well. Drouin's titles are the third and fourth by Huntoon pupils. The Ontario-native also brought home the title from the Canadian National Championships. As a freshman Drouin was named Big Ten Freshman of the Year, and in two indoor and outdoor seasons, Drouin has claimed four Great Lakes Region Athlete of the Year awards. Drouin has added three Big Ten titles and just continues to get better.
The 2010 indoor and outdoor seasons were a demonstration of Indiana's continued improvement in the sprints and jumps under Huntoon. The Hoosiers saw Big Ten medal-winning performances in the sprints from Devin Pipkin and Kind Butler. Butler then added All-America honors as a leg of the distance medley relay. The pair helped lead Indiana's 4x100m relay to the NCAA East Preliminary Round, where they recorded the fifth-best time in IU history.
In the jumps, the Hoosiers continued to be among the nation's best. Drouin's season speaks for itself, but Ashley Rhoades closed out her career with a Big Ten title and an All-America certificate. Sophomores Olu Olamigoke and Rex Parker each finished just inches away from the NCAA Championships in the triple jump, with Olamigoke taking a medal at the Big Ten indoor meet. Newcomer Emma Kimoto showed definite promise, advancing to the NCAA East Prelims.
In combined events, freshman Courtney Woodard and Laura Morris each showed they have the ability to make an impact in the Big Ten Conference, as the pair finished sixth and seventh respectively at the Big Ten Outdoor Meet. Huntoon's long-time pupil, and current IU assistant coach, Abbie Norton took her level of competition to a new level, competing for Team USA at the Thorpe Cup in Russia. Norton was a scorer for the team, helping the U.S. sweep the competition for the nation's second win ever in the annual competition.
Huntoon's effect on the IU program was very apparent in his second season in Bloomington. Huntoon's jumpers, sprinters and multi athletes won three Big Ten titles, recorded three indoor provisional qualifications and nine regional qualifications.
Kiwan Lawson added a Big Ten long jump crown, and Ashley Rhoades won the Big Ten high jump title. Lawson wasn't the only Hoosier to claim All-Big Ten honors in the long jump, as Cedric Hudson took second, showing IU's dominance in the event. Rhoades and Drouin advanced to the NCAA Outdoor Championships.
In his first season with the Hoosiers, Huntoon guided a talented group of seniors, including Courtney Johnson, Kyle Jenkins and Lawson to outstanding performances during the outdoor season. The trio qualified for the NCAA Championships, along with transfer Abbie Stechschulte, with Lawson earning his first NCAA All-America certificate. Stechschulte, an All-American at West Virginia, continued her career and was a national qualifier, as well as an Olympics Trials qualifier with Jenkins under Huntoon's tutelage. His first season at Indiana also resulted in 11 Hoosiers earning a trip to the NCAA Mideast Region Championships, two Big Ten championships and seven medalists.
Prior to coming to IU, Huntoon's 2007 season at West Virginia was highlighted by Stechschulte becoming Huntoon's 44th All-American with her sixth-place finish at the NCAA Indoor Championships in Fayetteville, Ark., in March 2007.
In 2006, Huntoon coached Stechschulte to a BIG EAST title in the pentathlon during the indoor season and sent seven athletes to the NCAA East Regional in the outdoor season.
The Mountaineers' top-20 finish in 2005 was accompanied by a pair of top-three finishes at the BIG EAST and ECAC outdoor championships. The team also had numerous individual champions at events such as the BIG EAST, ECAC, NCAA, Penn and Mt. SAC Relays.
Equally as exciting as the results on the track were the results in the classroom. With the largest roster in the program's history, the Mountaineers achieved their highest overall team grade point average and placed their greatest number of athletes on the Athletic Director's Academic Honor Roll. The team performed so admirably in the classroom, that WVU recorded the nation's highest team GPA.
Early in his coaching career, Huntoon was one of a handful of coaches invited to attend the USA T&F Elite Sprint and Hurdle Seminar in Orlando, Fla., a seminar giving coaches the chance to observe and break down the technique of elite caliber athletes and to learn about the biomechanics of each event. This opportunity had a profound effect on the young coach and is a major part of the day-to-day training philosophy he currently employs.
Huntoon's non-overbearing, yet technically demanding, style has allowed many of his athletes to attain numerous record-setting performances. His past coaching achievements include coaching student-athletes to conference championships in 14 different events.
Huntoon guided James Jett, a 2001 WVU Hall of Fame inductee and 10-year professional football veteran, to his Gold medal performance as a member of the 4x100m relay in the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. Jett also garnered a pair of runner-up finishes in the 1992 NCAA championships, leading the men's program to its highest NCAA team finish in school history. Connie Ellerbe, a 2005 inductee, was the NCAA runner-up in 55.87 (current school record) and fifth-place finisher in 400m hurdles at the 1992 Olympic Trials in New Orleans. Pat Itanyi also had a stellar career in which she captured the NCAA long jump title in 1995. Itanyi's 22'1" effort was the 10th-best collegiate jump in NCAA history. Jett and Itanyi had shared WVU's record for most All-America honors in a career with seven before Metcalfe earned her ninth and final honor in 2005.
In 2004, Huntoon helped the Mountaineers achieve their highest ECAC team finish in school history. West Virginia placed second at the 2004 ECAC Indoor Championships, its highest finish since 2000. In the final season as men's coach (WVU dropped men's track and field in 2003), Huntoon was named the 2003 NCAA Division I Mid-Atlantic Coach of the Year after the Mountaineers outscored over 80 schools at the 127th IC4A championship to claim their first and only title.
The Kenosha, Wis., native attended high school in Littleton, Colo., and earned his bachelor's degree and K-12 teaching certificate in physical education from Northern Colorado in 1988. An accomplished athlete at UNC, Huntoon began his career as a walk-on before earning a scholarship and serving as team captain as a junior and senior. He was a two-time conference champion and was named outstanding performer by conference coaches. He was a three-time NCAA qualifier in the high hurdles and the decathlon and still holds UNC's record in the 110-meter high hurdles.
Huntoon earned his master's degree in teacher education from WVU in 1992. He and his wife Ann have two children, son Jordan and daughter Jennifer.